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20 Sales Movies and TV Shows in 2020 That Help You Close Deals

Salespeople are the key to any organizations success. They are the frontliners out there talking to clients and closing deals. Selling is in itself an art form, which is why movies and television shows often feature salespeople. The profession is interesting and complex. 

There are plenty of movies and shows that capture the passion, energy, and ambition you need to launch a successful career in sales.

Cinematic portrayals of salespeople are usually entertaining and explore their inner workings, from human flaws and failings to hilariously outrageous schemes and rousing pitches.

The truth is, once you get past the obvious stereotypes, these movies and TV shows can help to not only entertain you – they'll teach and inspire you as well!

Why You Need to Watch Great Sales Movies and Shows

It is easy to get discouraged when you go into a sales slump because unfortunately not every day, week, or month will be lucrative. However, it is important to keep the same level of energy and inspiration at all times. 

Watching shows and movies about sales can help to pump you up and get you excited about the important job you have as a salesperson in an organization. The success you have and the success you help a company achieve are the direct result of your efforts.

Sales shows can also provide you with some much needed comic relief and help you to shake off the frustration you may face in the workplace. At the end of the day, sales should be fun and energetic, and these shows and movies can be a reminder of that. 

The Best Sales Movies to Help You Hit Quota

Each of these movies is not only entertaining. They also offer a glimpse at what it takes to be a successful salesperson, from the ability to accept change to the benefits of a positive attitude and focus. Check out these 10 awesome sales movies:

1. Death of A Salesman (1985)

Adapted from a play by Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman is the tragic story of Willie Loman. Tragic in almost every way, Loman's story reminds us that sales is a high-pressure, relentless game that's not for everyone.

Miller uses door-to-door sales as a metaphor for the failure of the American Dream. Death of a Salesman is a portrait of a man whose inability to change leads to his ruin. This is the classic sales story, change or die..

Where to Watch It 

2. Tin Men (1987)

Another classic sales movie, this one stars Richard Dreyfuss and Danny DeVito as competing aluminum siding sales reps in 1963 Baltimore.

Their rivalry escalates along with their attempts to get even. The movie takes place around the time when the newly formed Home Improvement Commission in Baltimore brought the hammer down on corrupt sales practices.

Tin Men captures the end of an era with wit and humor – a quaint look at the past practices, that gave sales a bad name.

Where to Watch It

3. Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)

Glengarry Glen Ross is David Mamet's intense masterpiece that follows a group of desperate salesmen in a Chicago real estate office. The dialogue introduced the phrase that strikes fear into even the most grizzled salesperson who ever tried to finalize a deal, “Coffee is for closers.”

Kevin Spacey plays the cold-blooded manager who doles out prospective sales leads, but it was Al Pacino's Oscar nominated performance as Ricky Roma that stole the show.

The scene where he manipulates a naive client into buying acres of worthless land is horrific and exhilarating!

Where to Watch It

4. Tommy Boy (1995)

Yes it's entertaining, and the duo of Chris Farley and David Spade is absolutely hilarious, but there's more to the story than humor. After the death of his father, Tommy Boy must save the family factory.

Behind the sophomoric fat-jokes, Tommy Boy actually shows the birth of a successful salesman. Under pressure to generate enough new business to keep the factory afloat and keep the old customers happy, Farley gradually learns that connecting with customers is about more than slogans and handshakes; it's about listening and responding to their needs with genuineness and humanity.

Where to Watch It

5. The Internship (2013)

The Internship is a comedy movie about two old-school salesmen whose company gets downsized. They decide that they won't be able to find new jobs because they lacked tech knowledge to get them there. They then find a way into an internship program at Google that allows them to compete for positions. 

This movie shows salespeople that they need to adapt to achieve success as things in the sales landscape evolve. In the end, Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson win the ultimate internship competition by approaching sales with a bit of new school and old school techniques.

The takeaway? Use what you know and be open to new ideas. 

Where to Watch It

6. Moneyball (2011)

Moneyball is a movie with Brad Pitt. Need I say more? Ok, you need to know how this movie relates to sales. 

In Moneyball, Billy Beane must change his whole approach to recruiting players for the Oakland A's baseball team that he manages. He is challenged with selling his new ideas about recruiting to his management team, scouting staff, and even some of the players. 

This movie essentially shows people why it's important to go against the status quo to achieve big results. 

Where to Watch It

7. The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)

While Death of a Salesman presents sales as a symbol of futility, The Pursuit of Happyness is an inspirational look at sales as a positive life-changing profession.

Will Smith earned an Oscar nomination for his performance as Chris Gardner, a salesman who, after a series of bad financial breaks, finds himself and his five-year-old son homeless.

After landing an unpaid internship at a brokerage firm, the film follows his unwavering pursuit of a better life, despite constant difficulties and setbacks.

The lesson: Perseverance, focus and a positive attitude can get you far in life, and in sales!

Where to Watch It

8. Joy (2015)

Joy is an inspiring movie about well-known entrepreneur Joy Magnano, played by Jennifer Lawerence. The film follows Joy, a divorced mother of two kids who makes a self-wringing mop. She gains the attention of execs at QVC and gets the chance to showcase her mop, but another salesperson ruins it for her. 

She then pitches the mop herself, and the mop sells out, earning her thousands of dollars. The film shows that hard work and sacrifice are necessary in the sales world and beyond to achieve success. 

Where to Watch It

9. Boiler Room (2000)

Boiler Room is a movie about a college dropout who takes on a job at a "fly-by-night" brokerage firm. At the firm, they sell stocks to unsuspecting people over the phone. The young stock brokers are rewarded with riches beyond their wildest dreams.

The main character soon discovers that the stock brokerage is selling illegitimate stocks to investors, and he has to make a decision to continue selling the stocks or to do the right thing. 

This movie is about the dirty side of sales, raising questions about morality and whether or not doing the right thing is worth it. 

Where to Watch It

10. Lord of War (2005)

The thing about sales is that it doesn't matter what you sell as long as you take care of your customers. Lord of War is a film inspired by a real-life weapons dealer who sold armory to African warlords.

Nicholas Cage does a brilliant job acting as an arms dealer in New York that focuses on supplying a demand rather than the fact that he is committing crimes and helping others do so. 

The takeaway here is that as long as there is a demand and you treat your customers with respect, then you can sell anything. We don't recommend selling weapons illegally though. 

Where to Watch It

10 Sales TV Shows to Keep You Inspired

These 10 TV shows can offer salespeople plenty of inspiration, along with some great tips on strategy and closing techniques. Check out these great shows:

1. White Gold

This is an original comedy in six-parts produced by the BBC. It tells the story of a “double glazing showroom” in Essex in 1983.

The show is led by salesman Vincent (Ed Westwick), who is charismatic, smart, handsome, and confident. He will happily break the rules if it closes the deal.

According to the BBC, “It's a story of dodgy shenanigans, scams, and petty rivalries – alongside free flowing drugs, cash and sex.” But it's also a look at the evolution of sales.

In 1983, the means of generating leads came down to charm, wit, perseverance, and a little “stretching” to close the deal. It also shows the power of ambition and competition in creating a top salesperson.

Where to Watch It

2. Ballers 

This one is worth watching solely for the awesome performance by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. He plays Spenser Strasmore, a retired NFL player with a black mark against his financial planning license and a pill habit.

He spends his time trying to convince football players not to blow all of their money, which turns out to be pretty difficult. The show is based around two salesmen, and there are plenty of lessons learned in every episode.

But no matter what happens, they always close the deal, working around even the most outrageous objections. This is a great show to watch on Sunday night to get you pumped for the office on Monday!

Where to Watch It

3. Million Dollar Listings New York

This reality show features NYC's number one broker, Fredrik Eklund. Eklund sells over one billion dollars of real estate a year in countries across the world.

Salespeople can really learn a lot from watching him on this show. He's uniquely himself, and his quirkiness gets him plenty of business. The fact is he's an expert – no one knows the industry or New York like him.

He's the perfect example of a thought leader demonstrating the importance of knowing your market.

Where to Watch It

4. Suits

This show is about Harvey Specter, a lawyer with an unconventional legal partner. Both are straight up problem solvers, tackling any obstacle that comes their way. 

They often use unconventional methods that benefit their clients. Salespeople will love this show!

It's all about selling defendants, juries, and judges on their way of thinking. The show features some good word tracks and closes that you can learn from.

Where to Watch It

5. Mad Men

Mad Men is a show set in 1960s New York that follows a group of men and women in the advertising world who are trying to master "the art of the sell." 

It displays the old way of selling face-to-face with customers. Don Draper, one of the main characters, often takes his clients out to discuss deals while drinking and smoking to their heart's content.

It also shows the cut-throat nature of sales and how each mid-level executive is trying to one-up the other.

Where to Watch It

6. The Office

The Office is a workplace comedy favorite. This show covers the world of paper sales with an office full of people who tend to joke around and talk more than they work.

It shows mostly what a salesperson shouldn't do, but every now and then they have bits of wisdom about business and sales that make sense. 

Where to Watch It

7. Workaholics

Workaholics is a sitcom about three recent college graduates that live together and get a job in telemarketing. 

The three roommates must learn how to work in the real-world without actually doing much work. They clash often with their boss and coworkers, but along the way, they learn to sell and encounter some challenges along the way.

Not the most inspiring show on the list, but it may teach you a thing or two about cold calling and give you some laughs along the way.

Where to Watch It

8. Workin' Moms

Workin' Moms is a Netflix original show that follows a few women on their journeys as mothers trying to stay professional and keep up with the men at work. This show isn't totally about sales, but one of the characters is an optimistic real estate agent who sells houses. 

This show still inspires continuous hard work throughout life's challenges. It also shows some hilarious situations that are highly entertaining.

Where to Watch It

9. Breaking Bad

Do people really wake up one day and become drug lords after working as chemistry teachers?

I highly doubt it, but this show takes sales to a new level as a former chemistry teacher starts manufacturing and selling his own meth. He finds some success and runs into plenty of trouble along the way, which is to be expected when selling meth. 

This series just shows the drive that it takes to sell anything you want. In this case, the main character really needed to provide for his family, and while his morality was questionable throughout the series, he did provide for them. 

Where to Watch It

10. Selling Sunset

This is definitely one of those dramatic reality TV shows, but these women know how to sell.

The show follows women from The Oppenheim Group in Los Angeles as they battle each other over property listings and try to prove themselves in the world of luxury real estate. 

Where to Watch It

Stay Educated and Entertained

Salespeople can learn a lot from TV shows and movies about their craft – everything from how to improve your performance to what not to do if you want to sleep at night!

But seriously, TV and movies are often a stereotypical reflection of how the sales profession is perceived by society. The fact is it's entertaining to watch, but if you watch closely, you just might learn a few things that can take your performance to the next level!

Happy watching!

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Erika Giles

Erika Giles

Erika is a Marketing Copywriter at Bluleadz. She is a huge fan of houseplants and podcasts about conspiracy theories. She spends most of her free time reading, writing, and enjoying the outdoors.